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Analyst Banks On Wireless, Comm Growth

Robert Abbe, managing director at investment banking firm Jefferies Broadview, offers up his technology prognostications for the next few years.

High-speed networks and mobile devices will result in a greater opportunity for vendors to drive growth around embedded software, according to Robert Abbe, managing director in the communications and software computing infrastructure group at investment banking firm Jefferies Broadview, a division of Jefferies & Company Inc.

Among the other technology prognostications Abbe offered in an interview with TechWeb: Consumers can expect wireless security updates to cellular phones and handheld devices, and e-mail will become the key mobile application. In addition, he believes the delivery of streaming music and video to the cellular phone will attempt to catch up with e-mail, ring tones and games.

With more businesses allowing employees to work remotely, mobile devices need to operate across a secure platform to manage e-mail, sales force automation and customer relationship management applications, Abbe believes. "Sybase and many other are enabling organizations to push out capabilities to the Blackberry or other handheld devices," Abbe said. "Symantec, MacAfee and other major security vendors are working on applications, and in the next 18 months there is likely to be acquisition activity driven by technology rather than pure consolidation and cost-cutting."

Carriers will continue to provide applications tailored to delivering games, ring-tones and full music track downloads. Similar to Jamdat Mobile Inc., there are a series of content companies realizing success as the trend moves toward a third-party open Internet-based developer model from a hosted business model controlled by carriers. This will give gamers a broader range of content. Abbe said when this happens consumers can expect Google Inc., Yahoo! Inc. and America Online Inc. to play a major role in managing and searching for that content.

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